Women’s Soccer Holds Off Upset-Minded Britons 2-1
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
By Chaz Amidon
GRAND RAPIDS - Calvin’s 800-minute defensive scoreless streak came screeching to a halt in Wednesday’s 2-1 win over Albion, but the Knights – ranked fourth in the most recent Division III Top 25 poll - extended their league unbeaten streak to 32 games – a stretch dating back to Oct. 2005.
Junior forward Natalie Veurink (Spring Lake/Western Michigan Christian) and senior midfielder Michelle Koele (Denver, CO/ Denver Christian) each recorded their third goal of the season to spur the Knights’ offense, which, for the second straight home game, lacked the synergy present in Calvin’s earlier MIAA victories.
“We have been scoring early in games, but we’ve only been scoring one or two goals (per game) and one or two isn’t enough,” said junior Emily Ottenhoff (Palos Heights, Ill./Chicago Christian), who leads the Knights with 11 goals in 2008. “We need to put a bunch in to take some pressure off our defense and make it a lot easier for them.”
Veurink’s strike in the fifth minute staked Calvin an early 1-0 lead, as the junior one-touched a cross from sophomore Carly Prins (Hudsonville/Unity Christian) to beat Albion goalkeeper Caitlin Bowman.
The Britons responded in the 25th minute with a goal from Rachel Kain, who fielded a breakaway pass from Ali Oatley and toe-punched a weak-side shot past Calvin keeper Alyssa Bergsma (Walker/Calvin Christian)
The game-tying goal was the first allowed to a conference opponent since the Knights’ 13-1 routing of Trine (then known as Tri-State) back on Sept. 22, 2007.
“I would hope that we wouldn’t be too comfortable,” said Koele of the goal. “I could see where it would happen like that, but really I think it was a lack of communication. We know that people can score on us and we need to come out 100 percent.”
Calvin emerged from halftime and controlled possession time for a majority of the second half until Koele caught Bowman off guard following a Mindy Capisciolto (Hudsonville/Unity Christian) corner kick in the 59th minute.
After Bowman attempted to punch out Capisciolto’s kick, Koele quickly trapped the rebound on the weak (right) side and sent the ball whizzing past the keeper.
“The goal was big, obviously,” said Koele. “We needed it to win. We’ve been working on getting more goals on corner kicks.”
Calvin out-shot the visiting Britons 21-6 throughout, gaining six corner kick opportunities compared to only one that Albion had.
The Knights (7-0-0, 12-2-1) will look to preserve its undefeated conference record an remain atop league standings when they travel to Trine on Saturday, Oct. 25 to wrap up the MIAA regular season
Photo Gallery: Photo Gallery
Post-Game Interview With Mark Recker: Mark Recker Interview